"...was written as an exploration of who else I might have become.
It's extremely violent, and I'm not— I'm extremely opposed.
I often find myself wondering what would have happened if I'd been affected in different ways by the events that shaped my life.
If I'd been made callous and cold, for example, or if I'd become one of those people that learn to deal with adversity by resorting to mayhem...
I don't think anything's clear-cut nowadays.
I hear a report on the news, a crime of passion, and my first thought is to wonder what brought the perpetrator to that point, you know?
How frustrated do you have to be; how hateful; how cold; how detached to actually kill someone.
So I tried to imagine that particular kind of "cold" that would make the act almost natural.
Like riding a bicycle— you do it once and you never forget how.
I think of the response to a question posed about what it's like to take a life, this from a film noir movie:
‘Killing's easy... one little step and you're there...’
I am attracted to certain kinds of tension, and with HARD BOIL I wanted to create the kind that arises
when attractive and poetic language is used to describe repellant and unpoetic events."
—from the interview segment of the broadcast video "Language Under Pressure: Readings from Kangaroo Court, Volume 2 / Rick Lopez,"
© Kangaroo Court Publishing, 1988; all program material © Rick Lopez, 1985.
My standard lead-in when reading this piece in performance went like this:
The first section is autobiographical.
The second section is fiction, you hope.
The third section was a dream I had that was not a night-mare.